New '.br' dispute resolution bypasses the courts

On September 30 2010 NIC.BR ('.br' Information and Coordination Entity), the entity responsible for the registration and maintenance of domain names in Brazil, published a regulation for resolving conflicts related to '.br' domain names via the Administrative System of Internet Conflicts (SACI-Adm). This system seeks to provide an alternative means of resolution of disputes involving the owners of '.br' domain names and third parties regarding the legitimacy of the domain names' registration, replacing the courts.

SACI-Adm cannot analyse or judge indemnification requests arising from the conflicts. Its governing regulation states that every domain name registered from October 1 2010 will automatically adhere to this new system, which may be used whenever a domain name is registered in bad faith, causing damage to the title holder, given the use, without due cause, of an identical or similar term to:
  • a Brazilian trademark registration or application;
  • a famous trademark, even where it has not yet been filed in Brazil; or
  • a company name, civil name, family name, famous nickname, artistic name or even another domain name, previously registered, owned by the claimant.
The resolution of these disputes will be conducted by accredited institutions before NIC.BR. At present, this means the Brazil-Canada Chamber of Commerce, this being the only institution currently authorised to implement the new scheme. The main advantage of SACI-Adm is that it will accelerate the dispute resolution procedure, given that the new regulation requires that the procedure be completed within 90 days after it has began. This term may be extended, based on the discretion of the accredited institution, as long as it does not exceed 12 months.

Jeremy Phillips, IP consultant to Olswang LLP, London

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